Monday, March 14, 2005

Despicable! Yated Ne'eman's online edition quotes authoritatively from Ku Klux Klan newspaper. Editor defends article.

16 Comments:

At 12:32 AM, Blogger jewishwhistleblower said...

Hat tip to Pravda Ne'eman for publicizing this outrage.
http://chareidi.blogspot.com/2005/03/devils-music-banned.html

Hat tip to Shmarya for his post on this.
http://failedmessiah.typepad.com/failed_messiahcom/2005/03/yated_neeman_ap.html#more

Rabbi Ephraim Luft in his article "Chareidi Music and Non-Music" sets this years' gold standard for chilul Hashem by utilizing the following quote in his bizarre tirade against "rock music":

http://chareidi.shemayisrael.com/NCH64features.htm
...
"It will erode the entire moral structure of man . . . of spirituality in holy marriage . . . all the white man has built through his devotion to G-d." (The Southerner, March 1956, p.6)
...

"...all the white man has built through his devotion to G-d."?

Despicable.

I shudder to think what was left out of this quote in the .... spaces. Please someone post the full article quoted.

The Southerner of course was a "news" publication put out by the Ku Klux Klan. See: http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/USAasacarter.htm

What is Rabbi Ephraim Luft doing reading the Southerner? Where is he getting this publication from?How can quotations from such a publication end up in a so called Charedi newspaper?

Apparently, there were complaints. Yet the editor of this publication, Mordecai Plaut, defends the quote and article:

http://chareidi.shemayisrael.com/archives5764/vayera/lettmusic.htm
...
"Africa was chosen and referred to as it was not because its residents are unequivocally black -- which of course they are -- but because they are unequivocally primitive. Africa and the savages who live there were chosen as symbols of primitivism not as symbols of a race. Thus, I do not think that the comments are racist."
...

Mr. Plaut, this quote comes from a Klu Klux Klan publication.

It's time for a hard look at our leadership that bans Rabbi Slifkin
and promotes Klu Klux Klan publications.

For further information see:
1)
http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/USAasacarter.htm

Asa Earl Carter was born in Alabama in 1925. He enlisted in the United States Navy during the Second World War and afterwards attended the the University of Colorado. This was followed by work as a radio announcer in Denver.

In 1954 Carter moved to Birmingham, Alabama to work on a new radio show. However, after complaints from listeners about his anti-Jewish views, he was sacked by his employers.

Carter became leader of the Alabama Citizens' Council but later formed his own Ku Klux Klan terrorist organization and began publishing a racist broadsheet, The Southerner, with Jessie Mabry. Over an 18 month period Carter's followers took part in the stoning of Autherine Lucy when she attempted to register as a student at the University of Alabama, assaulted Nat King Cole while performing on a Birmingham stage, beat civil rights leader Fred Shuttleworth and stabbed his wife, and castrated Edward Aaron, a 34 year old African American from Barbour County. Four of Carter's men, including Mabry, were found guilty of the attack on Aaron and were sentenced to twenty years.

In 1958 George Wallace failed in his bid to become the Democratic Party candidate to become governor of Alabama. His main rival, John Patterson, Alabama's Attorney General, was an outspoken segregationist who had become a popular hero with white racists by using the state courts to declare the NAACP in Alabama an illegal organization. Patterson was endorsed by the Ku Klux Klan and easily defeated Wallace.

After the election Patterson admitted that: "The primary reason I beat him (Wallace) was because he was considered soft on the race question." George Wallace agreed and decided to drop his support for integration and was quoted as saying: "no other son-of-abitch will ever out-nigger me again". One of his solutions to this problem was to recruit Carter as his main speechwriter for the 1962 campaign. This included the slogan: "Segregation now! Segregation tomorrow! Segregation forever!"

Carter worked with Wallace in the 1966 and 1968 elections but in 1970 he was a candidate himself. However, he only won 15,000 votes and was easily beaten by Wallace.

Using the name Forrest Carter, he wrote two successful novels, Outlaw Josey Wales (1976) and The Education of Little Tree (1976). Asa Earl Carter died of a heart attack in 1979.

(1) On 2nd September, 1957, Bart Floyd and five other members of the Ku Klux Klan, castrated Edward Aaron, a 34 year old African American from Barbour County, Alabama. William Bradford Huie's exposure of this Ku Klux Klan initiation ceremony first appeared in Time Magazine. He later wrote about the case in Three Lives for Mississippi (1964)

Two of the Klansman, Miller and Griffin, confessed, became state's witnesses, testified against the other four, and were given suspended sentences. Mabry, Floyd, Pritchett, and McCullough pleaded not guilty because, as members of the Klan and the Citizens Council, they did not believe an all-white, all-male jury would convict them.

Mabry, Floyd, Pritchett, and McCullough were tried separately, and the state's case was the same against each of them. After Aaron told his story, the women left the courtroom and Aaron partially undressed and stood before the jury. Miller and Griffin then testified, along with the doctors and the police. None of the defendants denied the atrocity; they only presented "character witnesses", including preachers. The verdicts were prompt in each case: guilty and twenty years.

In January 1963, however, with Klan support a hate-filled little man named George Wallace became governor of Alabama. The head of the Klans in Alabama and Mississippi, Robert Shelton, boasted that the Klan had supplied Wallace's "margin of victory". It was then assumed throughout Alabama and Mississippi that as soon as Wallace made his first appointment to the parole board, the four Klansman would be paroled.

Wallace's first appointee to the parole board took office on July 11, 1963. Two weeks later, on July 25, 1963, the board reversed its 1960 position and voted unanimously not to require the four Klansman to serve one third of their sentences before parole.

(2) Diane McWhorter, People Magazine (28th October, 1991)

Asa Carter, raised on his parents' Alabama farm was a leader of the South's scabrous racist fringe in the '50's and ghostwriter of Alabama Governor George Wallace's most memorable segregationist creeds.

In 1954, at 29, Asa moved to Birmingham, Alabama, and - as 'Ace' Carter - began peddling anti-Communist conspiracy theories on a new radio show. But city fathers soon drummed him off
the air after one diatribe took an anti-Semitic turn. Carter then installed by some local businessmen as a leader of the White Citizens Council, conceived as a middle-class alternative to the rough and redneck Klan.

Asa Carter's literary efforts were confined to a racist broadsheet, The Southerner, which he co-edited with Jesse Mabry. In September 1957, Mabry and five Klan brothers abducted a black man named Edward Aaron in the cinder-block clubhouse - decorated with posters of Asa Carter's campaign for city commissioner - pinned him to the floor and used a razor blade to slice off his scrotum, which was preserved as a souvenir in a paper cup.

2)
http://chareidi.shemayisrael.com/NCH64features.htm
IN-DEPTH FEATURES
Chareidi Music and Non-Music

by Rabbi Ephraim Luft
"If the Rosh Yeshiva knew where this song came from, he'd throw us out of here!" whispered one of the musicians in the middle of a wedding.

"Chillul Hashem!" shouted one of the guests, but his protest could not be heard over the loud music.

"Is this a chareidi wedding or a discotheque?" asked a number of guests.


The chareidi wedding, that was once a means to receive spiritual chizuk, has today been turned into a show to provide cheap entertainment and to advertise the latest hit songs of the chareidi pop singers. Instead of hearing warm Jewish melodies that uplift the soul, we now hear wild, noisy songs, disguised in frum clothing by using holy words from pesukim or tefillos. And of course the volume is set at an unbearable level so that the majority of the guests either are forced to stand outside or to leave the wedding with a headache.

Why do the bands insist on playing like this? Who is it that forces them to imitate the sounds of a discotheque? If most of the guests and even the baalei hasimchah suffer from this, why is it not possible to demand that they play in a respectable manner fitting for a simchah shel mitzvah?


Chassidic Rock

Just ask any non-religious guest at a wedding where all the modern "chassidic" songs come from and they will answer without hesitation -- "it's rock music!" This is music that has already corrupted two generations of young people, and is now being forced on us by unscrupulous people who have learned from the lowest of goyim the way to make lots of easy money at the expense of the souls of our children, Rachmono litzlan.

Many ignorant people say that it has always been acceptable to copy the style and even the melodies of the goyim for use in Jewish music. It is even permitted to use non- Jewish melodies in our tefillos, as has been stated in the Pri Megodim and Birchei Yosef. If so, they ask, why can we not continue this practice and use the modern style of music that the goyim listen to?

The answer is that not all music is kosher and respectable. There is music that was written for kings and nobility, and there is also music written for the lower segment of society.

In earlier times, most of the non-Jewish music was respectable and could be used for singing with holy words. Even simple peasant music was clean and fit for playing at Jewish simchas. But in modern times, with the development of recording and radio and the entertainment business that catered to the masses, a new purpose was found for music -- to arouse the yetzer hora.

It is not a coincidence that the young generation in America began to rebel and discard any ideas of morality and respectful behavior exactly at the time that rock and roll music was introduced. Therefore we must take care to avoid this type of rebellious music that promotes bad influences, and it is obviously absurd to set a rock song to words from holy sources.


What is Rock Music?

Let us hear what non-Jewish sources had to say about this music when it first appeared in the 1950s:

"The rock n' roll school in general concentrated on a minimum of melodic line and a maximum of rhythmic noise, deliberately competing with the artistic ideals of the jungle itself." (Encyclopedia Britannica Book of the Year, 1955, p. 470.)

"It appeals to the very base of man, brings out animalism and vulgarity." (Newsweek, 23.4.56, p.16)

"Rock and roll inflames and excites youth like jungle tom- toms." (Variety, 23.4.56, p.32)

"It will erode the entire moral structure of man . . . of spirituality in holy marriage . . . all the white man has built through his devotion to G-d." (The Southerner, March 1956, p.6)

Rock and roll "represents some kind of change in our standards. What has happened to our concepts of beauty, decency and morality?" (President Eisenhower in a public statement, 1956. Quoted in Garland Encyclopedia of World Music vol. 3, p.355)

Rock and roll "is the most brutal, ugly, desperate vicious form of expression it has been my misfortune to hear. Rock n' roll smells phony and false. It is sung, played and written for the most part by cretinous goons, and by means of its almost imbecilic reiteration, and sly, lewd -- in plain fact, dirty -- lyrics . . . it manages to be the martial music of every sideburned delinquent on the face of the earth." (Frank Sinatra at 1958 Congressional hearings, New York Times Magazine, 12.1.58, p.19)

"According to Allan Bloom (in his book The Closing of the American Mind) rock and roll is indeed no more and no less than the savage and primitive rhythm of darkest Africa." (From Present Tense: Rock and Roll and Culture, Ed. Anthony DeCurtis, p.47)

And finally in the article: "Why They Rock 'n' Roll -- And Should They?" by Gertrude Samuels, in New York Times Magazine, 12.1.58, p.19:

"What is this thing called rock 'n' roll? What is it that makes teenagers -- mostly children between the ages of 12 and 16 throw off their inhibitions as though at a revivalist meeting? What -- who -- is responsible for these sorties? AND IS THIS GENERATION OF TEENAGERS GOING TO HELL?"

Maybe we should be asking the same question.


Rock Music Conquers the World

Rock and Roll spread like a plague in a short time. The craze for the new type of music was reported worldwide. "Czechoslovakia and Poland want American jazz, and rock 'n' roll is Warsaw's favorite." (New York Times, 25.2.57)

By the mid 1950s the effects of the singers and their immoral music could be seen in the behavior of American youth. Religious groups, local governments, police authorities and white citizens councils began to denounce rock and roll, connecting it in an unholy alliance to race, immorality and delinquency.

In March 1957, fearing the effects of the "hedonistic, tribal rhythms" of rock and roll music, Chicago's Cardinal Stritch banned popular music from all Catholic-run schools. He later called a press conference to educate parents about the negative effects of rock music on their children.

Public performances by rock singers were banned in many American cities, but the young people demanded their democratic rights to behave like animals, and only countries with totalitarian governments such as Russia, Cuba, Iran, Iraq and Egypt succeeded in banning the new form of teenage rebellion.

Although the music of the Western World in earlier times included no similar type of immoral music, we do however find warnings in the writings of the ancient philosophers of Greece and China about the bad moral effects of certain types of music.

Aristotle (Politics 1339a, 15-20) said that there exist nobler strains of music and meaner ones, sensual rhythms and rational ones, discord and harmony. The base soul delights in more primitive rhythms whereas great souls delight in harmonic order and gravity of theme. Similar opinions were held by Plato, Pythagoras and Confucius.

Many laboratory tests have been made to show the influence of music on the growth of plants. Those exposed to respectable music are observed to grow faster than usual, whereas the ones exposed to rock music have their growth stunted and eventually die.

Researchers have also shown that wild rock music affects blood pressure and heartbeat, changing it somewhat to conform to the rhythm of the music itself. It is not a coincidence that many rock musicians die from heart attacks in their forties.


The Origins of Rock and Roll

Last winter, I received a visit from Mr. Philippe Ayache, a chareidi teacher of music from Strassbourg, France, who came to discuss with me all of the present day problems of the modern "chassidic" rock and roll. He asked me to print the following conversation and bring it to the attention of the rabbis:

"When I was a music student in the Conservatory in Strassbourg, I studied counterpoint and fugue under Professor Pierre Yves Meuge. He is a religious non-Jew and an expert in Baroque music.

"I once asked him whether Rock and Roll is music. `If you consider that noise is music,' replied the professor, `then rock and roll is also music!'

"I asked him why he thought so lowly of this music. He asked me, `What is rock?'

" `It is a kind of music that started thirty (today fifty) years ago,' I replied.

" `You are mistaken!' said the professor, `Rock music was born with man. It has been in existence for thousands of years! Look at the primitive people in Africa -- they are still playing rock music.'

" `I will explain to you what is `rock.' In all music there is a melody and a rhythm. In conventional music the melody is always the main factor and the rhythm is secondary to it. In rock music however, the principal force is always the rhythm, and the whole purpose of the rhythm in this music is just to waste time.'

"He continued to elaborate on this: `Why did people make such music thousands of years ago? For two reasons. First, it was made for idol worship, because music with a strong beat causes bodily expression [and makes the body overcome the mind]. The influence of this makes the listener into a completely different person. This is the music that is called today "rock"! [It should be noted that Rashi brings an opinion in the name of the midrash in parshas Bereishis that Yuval invented musical instruments for the purpose of idol worship.]

`The second reason was to arouse immoral behavior.' [This is the opinion of the Malbim about the intention of Yuval.]

"We therefore see," said Philippe Ayache, "that this non- Jewish professor arrived by himself at the same explanations that we received from our rabbis on the intentions of the originator of music!

"The professor continued to explain that modern rock music is just more advanced by using modern instruments such as the electric guitar, etc. But in reality it is a continuation of the primitive music that was made thousands of years ago.

"I questioned the professor's explanation from a modern song of the Beatles called `Yesterday' that is not at all indecent. He answered that this song is not a rock song since it has a delicate flowing melody and does not contain a strong beat. The music of the song is respectable. The only thing wrong with it is its words. When the tune is the dominant factor, then it is generally not rock music."

Mr. Ayache then began to speak about the pitiful state of chareidi weddings where the musicians degrade pesukim and divrei Torah when they play all the music in this style. It is without doubt a great chillul Hashem! Unfortunately, most of the public does not sense the spiritual danger that is hidden in this type of music that causes the body to overcome the mind.


The Warnings of Rabbis of Earlier Generations

We should ask: If there is such a spiritual danger in certain kinds of music, why do we not find warnings from the rabbis of previous generations?

The answer is, as was explained previously, that the problem hardly existed in European music over the past thousand years. We only find mentioned warnings against shirei agovim -- love songs, and the major problem of these songs is in the words.

This is mentioned in the Mishnah Berurah (siman 560 in the Shaar Hatzion 25 in the name of the Maamar Mordechai): "The Sheloh and other mussar seforim have already warned not to sing shirei agovim to a baby, because this puts in him a bad nature. And besides this there is a prohibition against love songs and indecent language that arouse the yetzer hora. One who guards his soul should distance himself from this and warn his household about it."

We do find in the gemora (Chagigah 15) about the effects of a Greek song on Elisha ben Avuyah, that influenced him to become an apikores.

We also find bad types of music discussed by great rabbis who lived in Arabic countries, such as the Chovos Halevovos (Shaar Haprishus ch.5): "Distance yourself from anything that may bring you to rebel against G- d and leave His mitzvos, from any kinds of songs and tunes and laughter and rejoicing that will disturb you from mitzvos and good deeds."

And Rabbi Chaim Falagi zt"l wrote the following in Kaf HaChaim 13, 6: "Would that the singers refrain from singing Kaddish and kedushoh to the tunes of the goyim in the makam, that anyone who knows them receives evil thoughts. This is despicable and cannot be accepted. Its absence is better than its presence."


Who Controls the Music at Weddings?

After we have clearly explained that rock music, also commonly referred to in frum circles as "chassidic music," is treif and that it is totally unsuitable to be heard at any Jewish wedding, we must ask: Who is it that is forcing the bands to play this type of music?

A number of modern bands were presented with this question in an interview in a certain magazine, and they all answered that it is the disc jockeys of the so-called religious radio stations who decide which songs are popular, and this is what they assume that yeshiva boys want to hear.

It is in fact a tremendous insult to the yeshiva bochurim to even claim that most of them even listen to such empty music, and certainly it is only a small number of boys who waste their time listening to these radio stations. We must also not forget that the majority of the guests at a wedding are over thirty, and most of them feel sick when they hear the latest treif rock songs made by "chassidishe" singers whose only connection to true chassidus is usually the yarmulke on their head.

In addition to the songs written by religious individuals, it should be known that recently it has become acceptable to steal the latest hit songs from the top Israeli or American rock stars and "convert" them by changing the words to make them acceptable to the religious public. Most of the people don't know the source of the songs and are fooled to think that they are from "our people." This is just another proof that there is no difference between chareidi rock and chiloni rock. The only difference is the words.

We must beware of all the singers who are sprouting today like weeds, and are trying to pass off their goyishe songs as Jewish, and are trying to fool us by their frum appearance. Some of them even learn in kollel.

But one can hear from their songs that they are very far from being bnei Torah. We must realize that holy words do not make treif music kosher, but rather the opposite -- the unclean music defiles the words.


The Committee for Jewish Music

Several months ago, I presented the above information to HaRav Nissim Karelitz and asked what should be done to improve the situation. He told me that a committee should be made to supervise the playing of music at simchas, and after taking advice from several other important rabbis, the Committee for Jewish Music was formed, consisting of a group of bnei Torah from Bnei Brak and Yerushalayim who all have experience in the field of music and understand the subject fully.

A special committee of rabbis who have an understanding of music was also made to advise the new Committee for Jewish Music, and a meeting was held in Bnei Brak on the 27th of Tammuz to make a list of guidelines regarding the music to be played at weddings. The members of the committee of rabbis are: HaRav Mordechai Gross, HaRav Shmuel Eliezer Stern, HaRav Sariel Rosenberg, HaRav Eliezer Dunner, HaRav Mass'oud Ben Shimon, and HaRav Aharon Mittelman.


The Chosson is Like a Slave

We must ask ourselves why is there such a demand specifically for this impure type of music? Is it true to say that most of the chassonim want to have a disco wedding?

The answer is no. Most bochurim do not want to hear wild music, but they are under a lot of pressure from a handful of bochurim who do not take Yiddishkeit seriously and set the style and the fashions in the yeshivos. Anyone who doesn't "keep up with the times" is mocked and looked at as not normal by these stupid boys who are themselves not normal.

We therefore find that today the chosson is no longer like a king at his wedding but like a slave to his friends who expect him to order a modern band that plays all the latest hits that their favorite radio announcers claim are worth listening to. These are the people who are in control of the bands at the weddings and who decide the popularity of each one. The fear of these boys is so great that many times even the baalei hasimchah have no power to tell the band how to play. Anyone who wants to know who these boys are who force their demands on the band and on the whole yeshiva, can see them at most weddings standing close to the band, reviewing their list of songs and making sure that nobody else comes to ask them to play something Jewish for a change.

This is the absurd situation that has been allowed to prevail. The solution is very simple. Most people cannot stand to hear all types of modern noisy music. Others do not care what they hear. The only reason that a small minority is dictating how they should play is because hardly anybody stands up to protest it.

In reality we have a serious obligation to protest, since this is a matter of Chillul Hashem. We must not leave it to a few individuals or to the roshei yeshivos (who generally come only for a short time) to try to fight the battle alone. If your ears hurt -- complain to the band! If they are playing songs that are made to be heard in a night- club -- don't be afraid to ask the baalei hasimchah to make them change to something respectable. And if the band does not even agree to listen to the people who are hiring them, make sure to give them support and don't be embarrassed to tell the band that we wouldn't think of taking them to play at our own simchas!

The Committee for Jewish Music already has a list of 28 bands who agree to play in a kosher Jewish style, and when there will be more public demand for this, many more will be asking to be included in the list.

There is one final point that has to be clarified -- the claim of the bochurim that there exists a minhag that the chosson chooses the band. I have asked many rabbis and none of them know of such a minhag. Certainly it is not a zchus for a chosson to choose a treif band that causes his parents and family to suffer at their simchah. The greatest merit for the chosson and kallah is to honor their parents and allow them also to enjoy their wedding. In this way they will also make a kiddush Hashem by showing others how a Jewish wedding is supposed to be celebrated. "The chosson should give honor to his parents and they should order [a band] according to the Torah and the mitzvah," writes HaRav Shmuel Halevi Wosner.

End of Part I. Part II includes the rules set by the rabbis and the Committee for Jewish Music, which can be reached at (972) [03] 6191973.

3)
http://chareidi.shemayisrael.com/archives5764/vayera/lettmusic.htm
Opinion & Comment
Was the Criticism of Rock and Roll Racist?
To the Editor:

I was rather put-off by certain features of the article about music which appeared in last week's issue (parshas Noach).

The theme was certainly appropriate and the conclusions the author reached were important and worthwhile. However, the article in more than one place interjected a crude racial element to the discussion of non-Jewish musical forms (specifically, rhythms, beats, etc.).

In the section called "What is Rock Music?" the author cites several critiques of Rock N' Roll from the 1950s, among them from a publication called The Southerner ("It will erode the entire moral structure of man . . . all the white man has built through his devotion to G-d.").

In the article's next section ("Rock Music Conquers the World"), the author notes that "by the mid 1950s . . . [r]eligious groups, local governments, police authorities and white citizens councils began to denounce rock and roll . . ."

A quote (spurious?) from The Closing of the American Mind is offered by way of another book that rock is "no less than the savage and primitive rhythm of darkest Africa."

Of course, we know the close connection of rock to jazz, and we know that jazz (in its purest form) was created by Black Americans. We also know that many (but not all) of the originators of rock n' roll were black. We also know that "mainstream" rock has, primarily, been a creation of white "artists."

The case against rock music as a cultural trend can easily be made. Likewise, the case for making a rigid separation between it and the kind of music recorded by "Jewish" artists and "Jewish" recording companies is easily made. The maintain a havdoloh in order to keep us far from the ways of the most corrupt of the nations.

The essential issues here are unrelated to race. The author, clearly reaching for a red herring (which, unfortunately, he found) sought to interject race and racist ideas into his argument. These ideas are un-Jewish in their provenance and have no place in your publication. The author's approach in this respect should be repudiated.

Sincerely,

M. P.

The Editor Replies: Thank you for your thoughtful comments. Racism is certainly not Jewish. For example, anyone can become a Jew regardless of race, as long as he or she meets the requirements.

Africa was chosen and referred to as it was not because its residents are unequivocally black -- which of course they are -- but because they are unequivocally primitive. Africa and the savages who live there were chosen as symbols of primitivism not as symbols of a race. Thus, I do not think that the comments are racist.

The main point is the primitivism of the music and not the racial origin. This is music only in its most primitive, elemental level. It is the product of a sensitivity that knows only the body and its functions and not the higher faculties of man. It is primal sound that emphasizes the body, gashmiyus.

This is something that was also recognized by non-Jews 50 years ago when this stuff started, but today it is completely forgotten.

If similar critics were writing today, they could, unfortunately, apply similar remarks to virtually the whole Western world.

4)
The Atlanta Journal and Constitution
October 27, 1991
THE MAN WHO LIVED TWICE; Little Tree,' big secret: Was best-selling writer Forrest Carter hiding; a vicious past?

By Jim Auchmutey STAFF WRITER
Bill Whitaker was getting ready for a date when his editor asked him to go look at a corpse instead. A novelist had died, someone he'd interviewed for the Abilene (Texas) Reporter-News. But for some reason, The Associated Press was confused about the man's identity. Somebody thought he might be another writer from Alabama, not Texas.

So Mr. Whitaker drove to the funeral home and peered into an inexpensive casket at a puffy-faced, middle-aged man with jet-black hair. He was laid out in a western-cut denim suit - the same one he had worn when the two had met at a book signing.

"It's Forrest Carter," the reporter phoned in.

He was half right.

When Forrest Carter died in June 1979 at 53, he left behind three western novels (one of which Clint Eastwood made into a movie, "The Outlaw-Josey Wales") and one memoir. It's the memoir that has people poking the ashes of their memories for any insight into the strapping writer who seemed to have no past.

Twelve years after his death, "The Education of Little Tree," Forrest Carter's memoir of his childhood among the Cherokees of East Tennessee, has become one of publishing's most peculiar successes. With almost no promotion, the book has sold 500,000 copies and has topped The New York Times list of nonfiction paperback best sellers since September.

It's a tale in harmony with the times.

Orphaned at 5, Little Tree - as Forrest Carter said the Indians called him - is raised by poor Cherokee grandparents who teach him self- reliance, distrust of government and oneness with nature. Schoolchildren have formed Little Tree clubs. Tommy Tune handed out hundreds of copies of the book at an opening-night party for "The Will Rogers Follies," his musical about the part-Cherokee humorist. Variety reported numerous movie offers last month under a headline that promised boffo box office: "After Dancing With Wolves,' H'wood is barking up Little Tree.' "

If Little Tree seemed too good to be true, it's because it is.

Early this month, news broke that the book may be the biggest publishing hoax since Clifford Irving conjured his Howard Hughes autobiography.

First the Abilene Reporter-News and then The New York Times ran articles alleging that Forrest Carter's memoir was a well-wrought lie. That the folksy raconteur who used to say you could hear a mesquite tree breathe if you put your ear to its trunk was actually Asa Earl Carter, a rabid Alabama segregationist who once ran for governor against George Wallace because he wasn't racist enough.

Forrest Carter's family has refused to comment. His widow, India Carter, does not answer her phone. His agent, Eleanor Friede, immediately branded the allegation scurrilous.

In fact, she says, the rumor came up during the author's lifetime and she confronted him with it point-blank.

"It's not true," he told her. "I'll send you proof. I'll take a fingerprint test if you want me to."

She didn't press him. She liked his books - liked him. Besides, with his high cheekbones and dark complexion, he looked Cherokee.

Did Forrest Carter even have Indian blood? Was he really a white race-baiter trying to bury his part in the Deep South's nightmare years, like some Nazi hiding under a rock in Argentina? And if he was the same man, did he undergo some happy transformation, repenting for his racial sins and being reborn as a New Age mystic with Native American wisdom?

One thing's for certain: he sure could tell a story.

Asa Carter was a little hot-blooded and quick to fight, but he didn't seem like a bad kid. Growing up in Oxford, Ala., just south of Anniston in the hilly tailbone of the Appalachian spine, Asa was the second of four children born to Ralph and Hermione Carter. Stalwarts in the De Armanville Methodist Church, they ran a dairy and lived in a white frame bungalow on U.S. 78.

"The Carters were good people. No one could understand how Asa got messed up like he did," says Julia Ruth McDowell, a classmate at Calhoun County High, from which he graduated in 1943.

How young Carter "messed up" is unclear. After serving with the Navy in the Pacific, he attended the University of Colorado and decided to pursue a career in radio. He married his childhood sweetheart, a Calhoun High cheerleader named Thelma India Walker, and took jobs as a commentator and talk-show host with stations in Denver and Yazoo City, Miss. He was back in Alabama at Birmingham's WILD-AM when his increasingly ultraconservative diatribes finally tripped him up in 1955. An advertiser dropped him for making anti-Semitic remarks.

Asa Carter turned his energies to what he saw as the cause of the day: defending a threatened Jim Crow. With his younger brother, Doug, he published a white supremacist magazine, The Southerner, and organized a segregationist fringe group, the North Alabama Citizens Council.

The police knew them well. In April 1956, four council members were arrested for attacking Nat King Cole on stage during a concert in Birmingham. A year later, Asa Carter himself was arrested for critically wounding two Klansmen during a shootout at a Birmingham theater. Charges were later dropped.

That wasn't his only connection to the Klan, according to Dan T. Carter, an Emory University history professor who's researching a book on the Wallace era. He says Asa Carter formed the Original Ku Klux Klan of the Confederacy, a 100-member paramilitary gang that wore Rebel gray robes and on Labor Day 1957 castrated a black man as part of an initiation rite.

Doug Carter, however, denies that he and his brother were Kluxers. "We didn't hate black people. We believed in states' rights. We were segregationists, not racists."

Asa Carter laid low after the 1957 incidents. He ran a dry-cleaning establishment in Birmingham, moved back to the Anniston area and raised four children (one of whom he named Bedford Forrest Carter, after Nathan Bedford Forrest, the Confederate general who founded the Klan after the Civil War).

In 1962, Ace - as everyone knew him - resurfaced in quieter fashion as a speechwriter for gubernatorial candidate Wallace.

"It was Ace who wrote most of the speeches George got known for," Oscar Harper, a longtime Wallace crony, wrote in his 1988 memoir, "Me 'n' George." "When George would want a speech that folks would talk about, he'd say, Ace, write me something a little fiery.' Then Ace would hole up in the suite we rented in the Jefferson Davis Hotel and write 24 hours at a time, smoking 10 packs of cigarettes a day."

Mr. Harper credits Ace Carter with the governor's most famous line, from his 1963 inaugural speech: "Segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever."

The governor later backpeddled from that battle cry. His speechwriter didn't.

When Mr. Wallace ran for president in 1968, he tried to disguise his more racial rhetoric for a national audience. Ace Carter didn't like it one bit; he wanted the 100-proof stuff.

"He was always trying to get Wallace to use terms like race-mixing' when Wallace wanted to use code words like busing,' " says Tom Turnipseed, a Columbia, S.C., lawyer who was the governor's campaign manager. "After a while, the Wallace people got a little afraid of Ace. He was beyond the pale."

By 1970, he was off the reservation as well. That year he challenged Mr. Wallace for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination. Candidate Carter vowed to lead a march from one end of Alabama to the other, pulling white children out of desegregated schools. His campaign literature showed that his prose had lost none of its pungency. Commenting on the governor's supposed drift toward the middle, his former propagandist wrote: "The dog returns to its vomit.''

On election day, Asa Carter won only 15,441 votes out of 1 million. The times were leaving his type behind.

With the state firmly under Wallace control, Asa Carter realized he had no political future in Alabama. He told friends he might get serious about writing that novel he'd always wanted to try. In the meantime, he needed to make a living. He heard about a new radio station out west and applied for a position there.

But someone passing through the station from Alabama recognized his name. "Do you know who Asa Carter is?" he warned, and the job was scotched.

Asa Carter never forgot that.

The colorful stranger arrived in Abilene about 1973. A big, bluff man in a denim suit and a bolo tie, he'd drift into town every now and then with a Stetson full of tales about riding the range and fasting with Indians and hanging out in Hollywood with Clint Eastwood. The actor was making a movie of the stranger's first novel, the story of a bitter Confederate veteran on the run from bluecoat vigilantes. It was published in 1973 under the title "Gone to Texas" - which is what frustrated Rebels carved on their cabins when they headed west after Appomattox to start over.

Like an Eastwood character, Forrest Carter didn't say much about his background. When he started showing up at Texas libraries, he said he had been raised by Cherokees in Tennessee and had moved west to work as a cowboy. It was pretty much the Little Tree story.

Far from a racist, he seemed like a Native American poet. He talked about the Wounded Knee massacre and how it wasn't Cherokees who wept on the Trail of Tears, it was shamed onlookers. He was proud to say that the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma had passed a resolution naming him their storyteller in residence.

If the details were hazy, it hardly mattered. Forrest Carter acted like a Western writer ought to.

"He looked like Clark Gable and talked like Will Rogers," says J. Robert Miller, an Abilene artist who befriended the writer.

"I'll tell you how charming he was," says Chuck Weeth, another friend who owned an Abilene bookstore. "Forrest had set up two of his sons in a Texaco station in town. He'd go down there with them sometimes and pump gas and clean windshields. He'd get to talking to a customer, and the next thing you know they'd be coming into the bookstore saying this guy was so interesting they wanted his book."

The only thing not charming about Forrest Carter was his drinking. The more people saw of him in Abilene, the more dissipated he seemed. He'd get tanked at the airport, miss publicity engagements, show up two days late and drunk for a picnic. Even his autograph was getting shakier.

Louise Green, who interviewed the writer several times on a TV nature show she hosted, witnessed his ugly side during lunch at a steak restaurant. "Forrest had been drinking," she says, "and someone happened to mention something about blacks. Forrest got louder and louder, talking about no-good lazy niggers and how they ought to send 'em back where they belong. And I thought, I can't be seen with this man, I have a TV show.' I got up and went to the restroom."

Lawrence Clayton, a dean at Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene, invited the novelist to speak to English classes on several occasions. He never heard him spout racial slurs, but he did worry about his friend. "One time, I think it was in 1979, the publisher's rep who came with him said he didn't think Forrest would dry out enough to write another book."

He didn't.

On his way to Hollywood, where a TV miniseries based on his last novel was planned, Forrest Carter stopped at his son's house in Abilene on June 7, 1979. What happened next is uncertain. News reports said the writer suffered a heart attack. His death certificate cited "aspiration of food . . . had just participated in a fight."

The ambulance driver, now dead, told this story to Mr. Miller, the first of the writer's friends to reach the funeral home: The father was drunk and started cussing his son. A fight broke out. The father fell, struck his head on a sharp countertop edge and choked to death.

There was no family at the funeral home, Mr. Miller says.

The body was shipped to Alabama and driven to the De Armanville Methodist Church. A couple of dozen people gathered at the graveside to hear a short eulogy and a few lines of Kipling. There was no minister.

Alabama newspapers first linked Forrest and Asa Carter in 1976, and the rumors soon trailed the writer to Texas. Occasionally someone asked him about it.

"It came up at a party I was at," Mr. Weeth, the book dealer, recalls. "Forrest waved his hand and said, That's my brother. He's a character, kind of a no-gooder. I don't have much to do with him.' "

That's how many acquaintances of Forrest Carter and readers of "Little Tree" have coped with the revelation that the writer may have been hiding a vicious past: Forrest and Asa couldn't have been the same person - spiritually, at least. He must have changed, they believe, and isn't that a beautiful story of human redemption? As Mr. Eastwood expressed it in a letter to The New York Times: "If Forrest Carter was a racist and a hatemonger who later converted to being a sensitive, understanding human being, that would be most admirable."

If it were only true.

Doug Carter saw no conversion. "As far as I know," he says, "my brother held firm segregationist views through the end."

Ron Taylor, an Alabama country musician who handled the funeral arrangements, also discounts talk of a changed man. "People think Asa Carter couldn't have written what Forrest Carter did, but I don't see any contradiction. He kept his racial pride."

One person who doesn't comprehend how a white supremacist could have written "Little Tree" is Forrest Carter's agent. Eleanor Friede met the novelist in 1973 when Delacorte Press, where she worked, published his first book. For the next six years, he sent her strange dispatches from Texas, Alabama, Oklahoma, Florida, Arizona, California. He always seemed to be on the move - "hidin' out," he called it. Even his wife, who split her time between Abilene and a beach cottage on St. George Island, Fla., didn't seem to know where he was much of the time.

When the dual identity controversy broke this month, Ms. Friede denied the connection time and time again when reporters called her Virginia home. "An anti-Semite, anti-Negro? That was never Forrest," she protested.

Finally, in the face of mounting evidence, Ms. Friede faxed a letter to Mrs. Carter. "I deserve to hear the truth," she pleaded.

The reply came from Florida the next day:

"I thought you knew."

GRAPHIC: Photo: Asa Carter, exhausted after losing a 1970 challenge to George Wallace, soon disappeared from politics. /The Anniston (Ala.) Star Photo: Forrest Carter autographs "Little Tree" in Texas in 1976. / Abilene (Texas) Reporter-News Photo: Asa Carter (lower left) got into a courthouse scuffle after his 1957 areerst in connection with a Klan shooting / The Birmingham News Photo: The author was buried in 1979 under a marker that said Forrest Carter. It later was replaced with a stone memorial reading Asa Earl Carter. Bill Wilson / special Photo: Asa Earl Carter in high school. Chart: Asa Earl Carter The political activist gave this biography: Background: Born Sept. 4, 1925, in Oxford, Ala. Raised by white parents who ran a dairy. Education: Attended University of Colorado. Job experience: Commentator at radio stations in Alabama, Mississippi and Colorado; organizer, North Alabama White Citizen's Council; dry- cleaning proprietor. Publications: Wrote and published The Southerner, a white supremacist magazine; wrote speeches and campaign biography for Alabama Gov. George Wallace. Affiliations: "Adviser" to Original Ku Klux Klan of the Confederacy. Quote (on the prospect of black policemen, in a 1970 pamphlet): "SOON, you can expect your wife or daughter to be pulled over to the side of the road by one of these Ubangi or Watusi tribesmen wearing the badge of Anglo-Saxon law enforcement and toting a gun . . . but he will be as uncivilized as the day his kind were found eating their kin in the jungle." Bedford Forrest Carter The writer gave this biography to his publisher: Background: Born around 1925 in the mountains of East Tennessee. Orphaned at 5 and raised by Cherokee grandparents who moonshined. Education: Self-educated. "We didn't realize what literate illiterates we were." Job experience: Cowboy. Writings: "Gone to Texas" (1973), "The Vengeance Trail of Josey Wales" (1976), "The Education of Little Tree" (1976), "Watch for Me on the Mountain" (1978). Affiliations: Storyteller-in-residence to the Cherokee Nation. Quote (from "Little Tree"): "Mon-o-lah, the earth mother, came to me through my moccasins. I could feel her push and swell here, and sway and give there . . . and the roots that veined her body and the life of the water-blood, deep inside her. She was warm and springy and bounced me on her breast, as Granma said she would."

 
At 6:12 AM, Blogger yingele said...

Now that is what I call a comment!

 
At 6:44 AM, Blogger Reb Yudel said...

I wonder where he got this litany from. An old Jewish Observer article, perhaps?

The quotes that I googled are are quoted on other religious anti-rock sites, but not in as full a list.

"Citizen councils", for the record, were racist Klan fronts.

 
At 8:12 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wonder what Rabbi Luft will have to say about----
http://www.davidbaugnon.com/film/matis.wmv

 
At 12:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jewishwhistleblower -- Where are you on the whole England issue? If you don't know what I am talking about, see fluffykneidle.blogspot.com

 
At 2:21 PM, Blogger jewishwhistleblower said...

>Jewishwhistleblower -- Where are
>you on the whole England issue?
>If you don't know what I am
>talking about, see
>fluffykneidle.blogspot.com

1) Mr. Roberts contact and the time he spent with this girl was inappropriate regardless of everything else.

2) Crime enforcement statistics indicate that false allegations of this nature are rare.

3) I think it took great courage for this girl to come forward.

4) I would note that the teacher's relation with this girl was common knowledge in the school and that ultimately it was her friends who convinced her to come forward.

Per Awareness Center yahoogroups:
http://www.theawarenesscenter.org/networkinggroups.html

Case of Anthony Roberts, teacher, Jews' Free School in Kenton, Middlesex

1)
Teacher 'Groped Schoolgirl in Secret Sex Sessions'
By Melvyn Howe, PA
Scotsman, UK
March 8, 2005
http://news.scotsman.com/latest.cfm?id=4226357

A schoolgirl told today how her favourite teacher repeatedly groped her during secret sex sessions between lessons.

She claimed the married father-of-two would shower her with kisses as he ran his hands over her body and insisted he loved her.

The youngster, who was just 14 at the time, told London's Harrow
Crown Court the elicit break-time get-togethers with Anthony Roberts in either the school photocopying room or an out-of-the-way theatre annexe were always conducted in the utmost secrecy.

One even occurred on prize-giving day while her unsuspecting parents sat in the audience, she alleged.

"I was going to him because I really liked him. It made him happy and that is what I wanted," she explained.

"I just wanted him to be happy."

But rumours started after one of her friends spotted her one day with her blouse still partly unbuttoned.

Not long afterwards she found herself confessing everything to her head of year after the parents of another pupil heard some of the stories and alerted school authorities.

Roberts, of Grove End Road, St John's Wood, north London, denies four counts of indecent assault and one of gross indecency with the child between July 3-27, 2003.

He also pleads not guilty to an allegation of "engaging in sexual
activity with a person under 16 other than sexual intercourse while in a position of trust as a teacher".

2)
Teacher faces court on indecent assault charge
Press Association
EducationGuardian.co.uk, UK
Tuesday March 8, 2005
http://education.guardian.co.uk/schools/story/0,5500,1433062,00.html

A schoolgirl told a court today how her favourite teacher repeatedly groped her during secret meetings between lessons.

She claimed the married father-of-two would shower her with kisses
and insisted he loved her.

The girl, who was 14 at the time, told Harrow crown court in London
that the breaktime liaisons with Anthony Roberts in either the school photocopying room or an out-of-the-way theatre annexe were always conducted with the utmost secrecy.

One even occurred on prize-giving day while her unsuspecting parents sat in the audience, she alleged.

"I was going to him because I really liked him. It made him happy and that is what I wanted," she explained. "I just wanted him to be happy."

But rumours started after one of her friends spotted her one day with her blouse still partly unbuttoned.

Not long afterwards she found herself confessing everything to her head of year after the parents of another pupil heard some of the stories and alerted school authorities.

Mr Roberts, of St John's Wood, north London, denies four counts of indecent assault and one of gross indecency with the child between July 3-27, 2003.

He also pleads not guilty to an allegation of "engaging in sexual
activity with a person under 16 other than sexual intercourse while in a position of trust as a teacher".

Opening what is expected to be an eight-day trial, Nina Crinnion,
prosecuting, told the six-man, six-woman jury that Mr Roberts, who worked at the 2,000-pupil Jews' Free school comprehensive in Kenton, Middlesex, deliberately set out to
"cultivate" a sexual relationship
with the girl.

"The crown's case, in essence, is that the defendant preyed upon an
adolescent girl over a period of time, telling her that he loved
her... so that ultimately he could use her for his own sexual
gratification."

Giving evidence from behind screens, the girl, now 16, told how keeping company with the wrong friends saw her behaving badly and her grades plummeting.

"I didn't really care about anything", she explained.

After one "really bad review" she approached Mr Roberts for help.

"I really, really liked him, because he liked me and understood me, the way I thought, and the way I acted," she recalled.

"He was really nice. He had a really nice personality."

She said lunchtime chats to discuss her problems and how her
behaviour could be improved, eventually led to them exchanging
emails.

To begin with they contained nothing untoward.

"As they progressed they got slightly rude," she claimed.

"It changed to 'I love you, do you love me?' and then kisses. Things like that.

"I used to get a couple a week. He used to send them late at night so in the morning I got up a little bit earlier while everyone was asleep so I could read them.

"He told me to make sure I deleted them in case anyone saw them and there was trouble," she alleged.

The teenager claimed that as their lunchtime talks continued and the weeks passed he would occasionally rest his hand on her legs.

3)
Sir groped me, says girl pupil, 14
Mirror
March 9, 2005

A GIRL of 14 told a court yesterday how her favourite teacher groped her in secret sex sessions between lessons.

She claimed the married father-of-two would shower her with kisses as he insisted he loved her.

One meeting took place after she slipped out of a school prize-giving day while her unsuspecting parents sat in the audience, she alleged.

She said: "I just wanted him to be happy."

Anthony Roberts, 24, of St John"s Wood, North London, denies four
counts of indecent assault and one of gross indecency with the child in July 2003.

He also denies sexual activity with a person under 16 other than
sexual intercourse while in a position of trust as a teacher. The defence claims the girl fantasised.

The trial at Harrow crown court continues.

4)
Schoolgirl Denies Inventing Affair with Teacher
By Melvyn Howe, PA
Scotland on Sunday, UK
March 9, 2005
http://news.scotsman.com/latest.cfm?id=4232469

A schoolgirl today denied "stalking" her favourite teacher and inventing sordid sex sessions with him.

She told a jury that repeated bouts of passionate kissing and groping with Anthony Roberts between classes had occurred exactly as she had described them.


But internet chat room rumours of being raped and made pregnant by
the married father of two were nothing to do with her, she told
London's Harrow Crown Court.

Questioning the 16-year-old during her second day in the witness box, defence QC Malcolm Swift insisted: "The truth is all these things you have written, said, recorded in your diary, said on tape and spoken of to your friends, they are all figments of your imagination."

"That is as far from the truth as possible," she replied.

Roberts, 24, of Grove End Road, St John's Wood, north London, denies four counts of indecent assault and one of gross indecency with the child between July 3 and July 27, 2003.

He also pleads not guilty to an allegation of "engaging in sexual
activity with a person under 16 other than sexual intercourse while in position of trust as a teacher".

5)
'Groping teacher'
The Sun (UK)
March 9, 2005

A SCHOOLGIRL told a court yesterday how she was groped by a married teacher when she was 14.

The 16-year-old claimed dad-of-two Anthony Roberts, 24, put her hand on his aroused manhood and said it was proof that he liked her.

The pair allegedly used to meet in secret between lessons at Jews'
Free School in Kenton, Middlesex. On one occasion her parents were
attending prize-giving, Harrow Crown Court heard.

Roberts, of St John's Wood, North London, denies indecent assault and gross indecency. The case continues.

6)
Teacher trapped by school 'rumour mill'
editorial@hamhigh.co.uk
Wood & Vale, UK
March 11, 2005
http://woodandvale.london24.net/woodandvale/news/story.aspx?
brand=NorthLondon24&category=Newswoodandvale&tBrand=northlondon24&tCat
egory=newswoodandvale&itemid=WeED11%20Mar%202005%2012%3A11%3A20%3A983

A TEACHER from St John's Wood used a 14-year-old girl for his own sexual gratification, a court heard this week.

Anthony Roberts, 24, of Grove End Road, carried out the sex attacks
at a top Jewish school where he taught religious education, it is
alleged.

He built up a rapport with the pupil after she asked him for help
with her schoolwork and they began meeting in the synagogue of the Jews Free School in Kenton, Middlesex, during lunchtime.

But Neena Crinnion, prosecuting, said their conversations became
personal.

The alleged grooming began in the synagogue in April 2003, where
Roberts would touch the girl's legs under the table and sit her in a position where he could look up her skirt, the court heard.

"The defendant preyed on an adolescent girl, convincing her over a period of time in 2003 that he loved her. He convinced her he loved her so he was able to use her for his own sexual gratification," Ms Crinnion told Harrow Crown Court on Monday.

He later carried out the first sexual assault in the photocopying room in July and warned the girl not to tell.

They met on four further occasions in the school where he allegedly carried out further sex attacks.

The jury heard how after the summer holidays the "teenage rumour mill" started and the allegations against the defendant came to light.

He told police they had only discussed "Jewish life" during their meetings. The girl said through recorded interview: "My friends told me for months to report it and said it was paedophilia or something. I just really liked him and I did not want him to get into trouble. I
did not want people looking at me differently, thinking that it was
my fault."

Malcolm Swift, QC, defending, suggested she had made the whole thing up. She denied this but agreed that she had problems with her school friends and parents before the alleged incidents.

Roberts denies indecent assault, gross indecency with a child and
engaging in sexual activity with a person under the age of 16 while in a position of trust.

The trial continues.

7)
Teacher In Court
by TJ Reporter
Totally Jewish.com
March 10, 2005
http://www.totallyjewish.com/news/stories/?
disp_type=0&disp_story=Zx9IJK

A teacher at a top Jewish school appeared in court this week charged with indecently assaulting a teenage pupil.

Anthony Roberts, 24, is accused of carrying out a string of sexual attacks on a 14-year-old girl after telling her he loved her.

Harrow Crown Court heard that a series of incidents took place at the Jews Free School, in Kenton, between April and July 2003.

The Jewish studies teacher was finally arrested when rumours of his relationship with the girl reached other members of staff.

Neena Crinnion, prosecuting, told how Roberts built up a rapport with the girl after she asked him for help following a poor school report.

"The defendant preyed on an adolescent girl, convincing her over a period of time in 2003 that he loved her," she said.

"He convinced her he loved her so he was able to use her for his own sexual gratification."

Crinnion said their conversations became personal and crossed the
boundary of a "normal teacher/pupil relationship".

She said: "He told her she was beautiful, he told her he loved her and began to tell her about things he would like to do with her in private."

On July 3 they allegedly met in a photocopying room where she went to collect some paper. "He started running his hands over her body and said to her: `I'm not supposed to be doing this'." As Roberts left the room he allegedly warned the girl not to tell anyone.

It was claimed the pair met on further occasions in various areas of the school where Roberts allegedly carried out three further assaults.

During her police interview the girl explained why she kept meeting Roberts: "I really, really liked him because he liked me. He understood me, the way I thought and the way I acted. I thought it would make him happy and I wanted him to be happy."

But when she returned from the summer holidays Roberts warned her to be more discreet in front of other pupils. She said rumours spread about her liaisons with the teacher and whether she was pregnant. She finally reported the incidents to senior members of staff after her friends urged her to tell her side of the story.

Under cross-examination, Malcolm Swift QC, defending, asked the girl if she had a vivid imagination. "No," she replied.
He added: "Remember how you described his alleged attentions in your diary?"

"No," she said.

"Do you remember describing it as amazing?"

She said: "I can't remember."

Giving evidence on Wednesday the girl denied she was obsessed with
Roberts and that her diary entries were a "fantasy."

The barrister quoted a diary entry in which she wrote: "Had a talk with Mr Roberts, love him so much." She said when they had a joke together over the dinner break it was "the best lunchtime ever."

"And you're saying you were not becoming obsessed?" the QC asked.

"I liked him. Obsessed was not a term I would use," the girl replied.

Roberts, who has no formal teaching qualifications, told police there had been no sexual activity. He said they had only discussed "Jewish life" during their meetings.

Roberts, of Grove End Road, St John's Wood, denies four counts of indecent assault, one count of gross indecency with a child and one of engaging in sexual activity with a person under the age of 16 while in a position of trust.

The trial continues.

 
At 10:36 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

f

 
At 10:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now post a comment about the outcome of the Roberts case.

What you wrote originally was rubbish - it certainly was not common knowledge amongst the other pupils, take it from me. This only happened in her head, because she is and always was disturbed.

Let's hope they kick her out of JFS as per the judges recommendations, because she and especially her mad father have endeavoured to ruin a man's life with their mooshoogas (sp?). Either way, the rest of the kids will make her suffer badly because they loved Mr.Roberts!

 
At 1:47 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let's see if your whistle can blow the truth as well as damaging lies and rumours. Mr Roberts was cleared unanimously on all counts and the judge awarded costs. Will those costs include compensation for the the sixteen months of pain and anguish that he and his family have endured? Of course they won't, and they can't. I wish him and his family the strength to pick up their lives and start again.

 
At 9:41 AM, Blogger jewishwhistleblower said...

I've posted extensively at:
http://fluffykneidle.blogspot.com/2005/03/velamalshinim-al-tehi-tikva.html

I hope to do a summary post here in the next few days.

>Now post a comment about the
>outcome of the Roberts case.

See above.

>What you wrote originally was
>rubbish - it certainly was not
>common knowledge amongst the
>other pupils, take it from me.

It's clear that the principal had to tell Roberts to stop meeting with the student privately.

>This only happened in her head,
>because she is and always was
>disturbed.

You should be ashamed of yourself.

the 14-year old alleged victim (now 16), was not on trial and was never charged with any crime.

The police investigation and prosecutors assessed the evidence and determined that criminal charges were warranted.

At trial, the prosecution was unable to meet the high standard of proof required in criminal cases (beyond a reasonable doubt) which is always difficult as it comes down to the word of a respected adult against a child. These are crimes committed in private without witnessess. As such prosecution of such allegations is difficult, let alone getting a conviction.

The jury found the teacher not guilty as the prosecution did not meet its burden. The jury did not find the teacher innocent as it has no ability to do so.

Again:
1) If he had followed the laws of Yichud, no one would have been able to make any claims of this sort against him.
2) It was unprofessional to have meetings alone with this 14 year-old girl.
3) It was unprofessional to tell a 14-year old student he "loved" her.

The protection of our children is so fundamental that one who even has a chashash against him should not be entrusted with our children. The same is true in kashrut, how more so with our children.

Based on his unprofessional behavior alone the teacher should be out of chinuch.

Watch this 27 minute CBC news video and you will see a story that also began with allegations of unprofessional behavior by a teacher. The early story and reaction of the community seems similar to the situation here:

http://www.theawarenesscenter.org/offender/brykslq.rm

>Let's hope they kick her out of
>JFS as per the judges
>recommendations, because she and
>especially her mad father have
>endeavoured to ruin a man's life
>with their mooshoogas (sp?).

Pure mozi shem rah and shameful.

>Either way, the rest of the kids
>will make her suffer badly
>because they loved Mr.Roberts!

Shameful.

>Let's see if your whistle can
>blow the truth as well as
>damaging lies and rumours. Mr
>Roberts was cleared unanimously
>on all counts and the judge
>awarded costs. Will those costs
>include compensation for the the
>sixteen months of pain and
>anguish that he and his family
>have endured? Of course they
>won't, and they can't. I wish
>him and his family the strength
>to pick up their lives and start
>again.

Mr. Roberts was not "cleared", he was found not guilty. There is a world of difference between the two.

 
At 7:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You clearly have not followed the case, yet you write with such authority. There is no doubt that Roberts made mistakes, but he was not meyached with the girl at any time - he denied that the events ever happened and the judge and jury believe him to be telling the truth.

 
At 8:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is outrageous for you to suggest that this talented teacher should be out of chinuch because of a chashash, where none in fact exists. To further write that Mr Roberts' ' Not Guilty' verdict is not the same as having his innocence proved because the crown were unable meet the 'burden of proof' is totally false. The jury were given evidence-which they accepted- both orally and from school records that Mr Roberts was on a different floor in another classroom and not in a classroom opposite the photo copy room at the time alleged assaults occurred. There was also other evidence which does not need to be gone into now. Furthmore, there was never any question of Yichud, unless you call teaching in the shool with others present, with people coming in and out the whole time Yichud. This evidence by the way was availible to the crown if they had bothered to look, perhaps they had a different agenda?. I would suggest that your post shows a total ignorance of the facts, is insensitive to the vulnerability of teachers who are easy prey for these sort of allegations and is pure Motzi shem Roh. Your apologies would be in order.

 
At 11:28 AM, Blogger jewishwhistleblower said...

>There is no doubt that Roberts
>made mistakes,

That much is clear.

Based on Roberts own testimony, he was unprofessional and violated the laws of Yichud.

Again:
1) If he had followed the laws of Yichud, no one would have been able to make any claims of this sort against him.
2) It was unprofessional to have meetings alone with this 14 year-old girl.
3) It was unprofessional to tell a 14-year old student he "loved" her.

 
At 11:29 AM, Blogger jewishwhistleblower said...

>It is outrageous for you to
>suggest that this talented
>teacher should be out of chinuch

Let him get credentials if he is so talented.

>because of a chashash, where
>none in fact exists.

You're right, his behavior was clearly unprofessional and a violation of Jewish law.

>To further write that Mr
>Roberts' ' Not Guilty' verdict
>is not the same as having his
>innocence proved because the
>crown were unable meet
>the 'burden of proof' is totally
>false.

It is totally true.

>The jury were given evidence-
...
>apologies would be in order.

It is clear he was providing private tutoring for this girl. Ignoring the abuse allegations, he was unprofessional and violated Jewish law.

He should be out of chinuch.

 
At 12:12 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are nothing but a wind up merchant. I repeat there was NO evidence of private tutoring other than in the shool-IN PUBLIC-. The girls mother under oath said she had a vivid imagination, other evidence confirmed that she stalked him, and was obsessed by him 24/7. You shoot from the lip and do not let the facts get in the way. shame on you

 
At 4:26 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Innocent Roberts Speaks

by David Garfinkel and Zeddy Lawrence - Mar 24

JFS teacher Anthony Roberts, who was last week cleared of sexually assaulting a pupil at the school, has described the moment police came to his home to arrest him as “sheer hell”.

It took the jury at Harrow Crown Court just three and a half hours to reach a unanimous decision to acquit the 25-year-old, known to his friends as Lieb, of four counts of indecent assault and one of gross indecency with a child.

For the married father-of-two and his family, the “horrific” ordeal began in December 2003.

Speaking to TJ yesterday, he recalled the emotional trauma he went through when the accusations first came to light.

“I was aware of some problems with the girl,” he said. “I was giving her some personal attention during lunch breaks for tuition, but I had taken advice from a senior teacher and I stopped learning with her. She got very upset by that.

"A phone call was made to the school and suddenly everything became real. The girl, who had been a pupil of mine, was now telling a story. I was suspended from my job."

A few months later, in February 2004, police arrived at Roberts’ St John’s Wood home.

“It was sheer hell the moment I was arrested,” he said. “They came at 8am in the morning. We were having a bit of a day off. I had been to shul to davern and my wife was still in bed – she was pregnant at the time. My baby son was asleep.

“When the police came, they knocked on the door, arrested me and searched the flat. My baby son woke up and was crying. My wife was shocked."

Roberts says he felt intimidated by the way officers handled the investigation. “We are meant to be innocent before proven guilty," he said, "but I was treated completely the opposite.

“That’s the way the police made me feel. That’s the way I was treated in interview.

“I had never seen the inside of a police station before. It was hellish. At one point when I was charged I was kept in a cell overnight for the most ridiculous of reasons."

The next morning Roberts was taken to court in handcuffs and says it was the "most horrible sensation".

The sorry saga came to a head this month when Roberts stood trial. However, despite the prospect of a jail sentence, and with his reputation on the line, the Jewish studies teacher was certain justice would prevail.

He said: “I was confident because I was telling the truth. It was still very upsetting every time I heard the accusations, but at that point I was looking forward to when the defence could speak and tell the truth.”

Eventually that time came and the jury were left in no doubt as to Roberts’ innocence.

Remembering the moment he heard the verdict, he said: “It was a huge sense of relief.

"It was very difficult for all of us. My family have suffered with me. They have supported me tremendously. And now they are rejoicing with me.

"It is a huge shame that innocent teachers can be put through such hell for no real reason."

Looking to the future Roberts, who has since left JFS, says he still hopes to pursue a career in education.

“Teaching is my vocation and please God I will teach at some time again in the future. I am completely open about deciding my future.

“But I am going to take a little bit of a break now. My wife and I and my children need a holiday to recover from the trauma we have been through.”

Amazingly, Roberts still manages to take something positive out of the ordeal.

“Everyone must learn from their experiences, whether they are good or bad,” he said.

“The most tremendous thing is how my wife, my parents, my siblings, my extended family, the whole community, had such faith and belief in me.

"That really helped me through what was a very difficult time.

"And we will be there for our friends and family when they need us.”

 

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